Thursday, May 3, 2012

Mitt Romney Vows To Raise Taxes!

What I would do? People ask me, `What would you to get the economy going'? and I say, `well look at what the president's done, and do the opposite.
That's Mitt Romney's new version of his economic plan, via Political Wire.

Let's see...Barack Obama cut taxes in the stimulus bill; guess Romney would have raised taxes there. He extended Bush-era tax cuts at the end of 2010 -- for most of it enthusiastically; he was dragged to extending them for upper-level taxpayers. So I'm not sure whether Romney would end them for everyone, or only for taxpayers who aren't rich. Maybe a reporter will ask him about it? And then we have the payroll tax cuts more recently. I guess Romney, doing the opposite, would have raised those, too.

It's also not clear whether keeping interest rates low counts as "what the president's done" or not, so again one would have to ask Romney whether he would have pushed for high interest rates, too, as many Republicans have advocated in order to prevent the hyperinflation that was going to start in 2010 or whatever. He certainly would have let Detroit die...oh wait, is today Thursday? Not sure what his position on that one is today.

To be fair: he certainly would not have imposed the ACA tax increases that will kick in after a while. Or...I think there was a cigarette tax increase? Yup. So that becomes a tax cut. But outside of that, it's pretty clear what Mitt Romney would have proposed in 2009 and will be proposing should he be president in 2013: tax increases as far as the eye can see.

9 comments:

  1. Romney's quip isn't a plan, it's what you say when you don't have a plan.

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  2. It's much simpler: According to the Republicans, Obama raised taxes the whole time. They've been saying that for years, so it's truthy, right?

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  3. This is ridiculous. Romney never mentioned taxes. The English language is idiomatic, not strictly logical. If I say "Jimmy Carter was wrong about everything," that does not commit me to the proposition that the sky is not blue. Even a five-year-old realises this.

    Romney does not mean that he would literally take the precise opposite of every action Obama took. He means something like... instead of passing a major stimulus program, he'd have tried to rein in spending, instead of passing a large healthcare bill due to take effect in the far future, he'd have focused on something else, etc. Whether this is wise policy or no, everyone reading that quote understood the meaning. Even you, despite your efforts to deliberately misunderstand.

    Indeed, your misunderstanding fails even on its own terms, because actions do not have precise "opposites." For instance, what is the "opposite" of extending the Bush tax cuts by 2 years? Is it ending them? Is it extending them permanently? Is it going back in time and making them end 2 years earlier?

    Of all the stupid things I've read on this blog, this ranks around the middle.

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    Replies
    1. I think you're mistaken to take out your frustration on the quality of the blog. Romney said something in very absolute terms: to paraphrase,"when the subject is the economy, I will follow the opposite course from the one Obama took." This is a reflection of the intellectually impoverished ideas that emerge in our partisan political environment.

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    2. Shorter version of anonymous: "When Mitt Romney gives an exceedingly vague, wise-ass answer to a question about policy, it is our duty to imagine the most reasonable possible answer and assume that that is what Romney must have meant to say."

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  4. Uh-oh. Hope this isn't a sign of things to come as the campaign heats up, Mr. Bernstein.

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  5. Right headline. Wrong reasoning.

    Romney has vowed to raise taxes because he supports the Ryan plan- which gives a big tax cut to the wealthiest Americans but is "revenue neutral".

    If the richest 1% get a big tax cut and the plan is revenue neutral then Romney and Ryan have vowed a tax increase on everyone else.

    ... which is the opposite of the Obama plan come to think of it.

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  6. From the facts of what he said, he most likely will raise the taxes.

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